An old theme post for the fantabulous folks at Nourishing Storm. Check out what’s new and good over there.
I teach anatomy to yoga teachers in training. I love it. For one of their projects, I have my students each pick a pose to present to the class as an anatomical study. Which muscles are engaged? Which assist? Which are stretched? How can it be modified? I ask my students to pick a pose they aren’t comfortable doing, a pose they always resist. I believe those are the poses that offer us the greatest opportunity for growth. Somewhere in the depths of those poses that challenge us, we discover our true grit.
And so it is with the yoga of life. There are places and times that are difficult to bring our whole selves to; but those are the places and times, if we can be present with them, that we discover our greatest gifts. They may not be the gifts we ask for or how we envisioned those we did. They usually are the ones that take a bit of trust to unearth. They can be wrapped in fear and doubt and hurt, hidden at the edges of our soul. And we need to be willing to touch that fear and hurt to unwrap them. It may seem unfair, but great treasures are rarely easy to find. They almost always take some digging.
And this adventure called life gives us plenty to dig. Life is a constant contrast of weaving together and unraveling, of mining for our gifts buried within and bringing them to light to share with the world. Living as an explorer of life takes courage and faith. Courage in the form of a willingness to go into places that may strip us of things we held dear, things that may not have been ours to hold. And faith that when we get there we will discover something much dearer that is ours to hold forever.
This is how I understand the yoga of life. I can only hope that my students find the their own wholeness in each pose. But that is something we teach ourselves. My yoga is a union of my entire being with each moment, no matter how the moment moves or contorts me. It is the bend and the fold and the rise and the reach for the fullest expression of my truth in each moment. And in my yogic journey I have discovered many lands beyond the fences I’ve put up in the past, lands I once thought barren or poisoned. Those are the places in my soulscape that now possess a profound beauty I cannot name and that I could never have known without the faith and courage to go further.
I will keep exploring myself and this life and hope to encourage others to do the same. I know new lands lie within, waiting for us to claim them; and, in doing so, we can own new pieces of ourselves. And one day I hope we all will meet beyond our walls and fences and discover our oneness out there.
“Even so, I’m somebody. I’m the Discoverer of Nature. I’m the Argonaut of true sensations. I bring a new Universe to the Universe Because I bring the Universe to itself.” ― Alberto Caeiro, The Keeper of Sheep